Thanks for your emails!! It was so great to hear from you and I love reading your emails. Guess what?? I'm 21!!!!!! I don't really feel 21... I didn't even feel 20... I still feel like I just graduated high school like last summer but apparently I have been out of the womb for 21 years now so that's cool. We really didn't do much on my birthday to be honest! Sister Scott "surprised" me with a birthday cake! (haha not really... you can't really keep anything a secret from your companion since you have to be within sight and sound of each other 24/7 so I saw her buy it at the store). But it was still fun! And THEN when we got home that night I opened my AWESOME birthday package!!! I loved it!!! Thank you so much - it was so cute. Hahaha I loved all the little boxes you put in with different gifts inside and I shared my cupcakes with my district. Thank you so much!! OHH and don't let me forget ... THE CARD!!! Hahahahaha the front of it alone was hilarious - thank you so much!! I really loved my package and everything in it and I really appreciate it - you are all amazing!! Also! So you know how we were trying to see how many lessons we could get this week? Well we didn't get anywhere close to 70 or anything BUT we got 23 which is more than we have gotten before!! PLUS we found 4 new investigators this week!!! AND we got more lessons than the Elders in our ward so that's good too. We are having another competition this week and the winner gets a gallon of chocolate milk (the Elders chose the prize). Anyway, I will start telling you about my week now!!!
So on Tuesday we visited this old lady who some Elders tracted into a few years ago. Her name is Patricia - she's probably in her early 80's and lives in a beautiful home and her husband died a few years ago and you can tell it's really hard for her. Anyway, we have tried to get in her home for a few weeks now and she always has excuses for why we can't come in. Things like "Right now, I'm picking out my clothes for the week" "I just sat down to eat" (keep in mind she's pretty old and stuff). So her excuses are always funny but this time I was just like "can we come and share a short scripture with you? It will only take 5 minutes and then we will let you get back to your day." So she lets us in and she told us about her husband. They didn't have any children so you could tell they spent a lot of time together and she started crying and so we talked about the plan of salvation a little bit and left her with a pamphlet that briefly talks about it. And then... about an hour later she finally let us go. It was so good though. Before we left she was like "please come back". She is adorable. Just a really classy old woman. We also met with some less active members. We are working with a lady in the ward who had her name removed years ago but she wants to come back now so we are teaching her the lessons so she can get baptized again. We also tracted quite a bit and found some really neat people and they all had some kind of connection with Mormons which is always really cool. We have been using a different approach when we tract lately and it works pretty well!! After we like introduce ourselves and stuff we just say something like "can we share a short scripture with you?" and they pretty much always say sure and so while we are getting out a Book of Mormon, we introduce what it is and then share the scripture with them and it just opens people up to more discussions than usual and it's really cool! One lady we met made a comment on how much it applied to her at this point in her life and it's just really neat to hear things like that.
Wednesday was my birthday!! That morning we helped out at the food pantry and I was talking to the guy, Ray, who is in charge of it all and I was leaning on like one of those lever/fork lift things that grocery stores use to carry heavy stuff around and I accidentally let the lever go and it landed on his foot!!!! Luckily there wasn't anything heavy on it at the time, just a few boxes, but still I felt so bad!! We were also able to get into a less active members home that multiple ward members have been trying to get in and they told us "don't count on them letting you in". And they let us in!!!!! It's really sad, they were really active less than a year ago and then apparently they got offended some how and they don't really want anything to do with the church anymore. Just the wife was home and you could tell she didn't really want us there but we were just so happy we even got in!!!
On Friday we found 3 new investigators!!! The first one is Katelyn. She is 22 and has a 9 month old. She hasn't been very religious for years now because she was always forced into it when she was growing up. Now, she's on her own and wants something more in her life and she had a lot of questions. And she literally lives right across the street from the church which is perfect! She doesn't really know much about God or religion at all and so she wants to learn. Our next investigator we found was Beth. She is married, has 2 kids in college and doesn't go to church currently. We don't really know if she is looking for anything currently but she is interested in learning more about what we believe and I think she's someone who would be able to recognize the importance of it after we talked to her more about the Book of Mormon and stuff. Before we went in for the night, we found Amy! She was someone Elders tracted into a few years ago and she is currently Lutheran but doesn't always go. We introduced the Book of Mormon and she has had a ton of connections with Mormons in her past! Her Dad did carpentry for the St. Louis Temple and she had Mormon neighbors and doctors and she always really liked them. It makes me grateful for whoever the Mormons people met were good examples because it makes such a huge difference in the future!!
Oh ya! Hahahaha okay so Friday morning we had district meeting and all the Elders were trying to give us all their Easter candy but we didn't want it either and so we all ended up having a candy war and like throwing it in each others cars or trying to hide it in places we wouldn't see it and Sister Scott and I pretty much lost because they threw it all in our car and then drove off but THEN hahahaha they were behind us at a stop light with their windows rolled down and I gathered all the candy together and ran out of our car and threw it in their car and then the light turned green so they ended up with it. It was pretty funny.
Saturday morning we met with Audre! Throughout the week she had been texting us and she is seriously so amazing. When she gets bored or has free time during class, she watches mormon messages and the district and things like that. So we met her at the park in the morning and we brought her a personal progress book and she was so excited about that. I also gave her a ctr ring and she was so excited. I think it's just really amazing to me to see how young she is and how interested in the gospel she is. She wants to get baptized so badly but she knows her parents aren't okay with it right now. We talked to her about fasting and today she is fasting for some extra help!
Yesterday Audre came to church and went to young women and everything and she loved it!! She told us how good of a day she had and how much she loved being at church and around Mormons. We also saw Jia yesterday and for a while we were stuck as to what to teach her because she doesn't have any Christian background but we decided to just start with the Restoration and Prayer so we will see how that went next time we see her.
Ken has been super hard to meet with lately which is frustrating... but he said he could meet on Wednesday so that's good! Shannon's phone has been broken and she has had to work but she still wants to meet with us.
This morning I was reading the Joy of Womanhood by Sis. Nadauld and a couple things stood out to me that I really like!!! She talks about how we should "celebrate the fact that girls are different from boys". I just liked that a lot! I think with all the feminist women these days in the church they want to be treated like the men but they forget that we are different and there's a reason for that! Plus... have you ever noticed that feminists look like men...? Like... if you want to be treated equally than at least try to look feminine. Sorry I kinda have a rant about all those women. I just don't feel like they get it!
Anyway, that's pretty much my week! I hope you all have a super fabulous week and day!!! I MISS YOU SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
OOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH AND I LOVE YOU BUNCHES AND BUNCHES AND BUNCHES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!